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Vietnamese Caramel Braised Catfish Recipe | Clay Pot Cá Kho Tộ

Course Main Course



  • 2 lbs Catfish
  • 3 tbsp Sugar
  • 3 tbsp Fish Sauce
  • 1 tbsp Minced Garlic
  • ½ tsp. Black pepper


  • 2 tbsp Sugar


  • 1-2 tbsp Fish Sauce (if needed – taste test to your liking)


  • Chopped Green Onions
  • ½ tsp Black Pepper


  • Wash Catfish thoroughly with salt and vinegar.
  • Marinate Catfish with sugar, fish sauce, minced garlic and black pepper.
  • Marinate for 20-30 minutes.
  • Start cooking by making the caramel sauce. Add 2 tbsp of sugar to your pot. A clay pot would be most authentic for this dish.
  • Over medium heat, melt the sugar. Keep stirring the sugar and keep a close eye so it doesn’t burn. Once sugar has a beautiful amber caramel color, add the Catfish and try to get the caramel sauce on all sides of the fish.
  • Add the remaining ingredients and liquid from the marinade sauce.
  • Put lid on and cook for 3-4 minutes.
  • Turn fish so all sides have a change to take on a gorgeous color. Put lid back on and cook for another 3-4 minutes.
  • Now taste test and season to your liking. We usually add another tbsp of fish sauce at this time.
  • Cook without lid on for 5 minutes so sauce can thicken up.
  • Add chopped onions, hot Thai Chili peppers and black pepper. Ready to serve!


Keyword Clay Pot Ca Kho To, Vietnamese Braised Catfish, Vietnamese Caramel Catfish Recipe